Web Mapping

https://www.google.com/maps/d/embed?mid=1wbDaNu0HqWltTLCAM0DHT8Mxl04&hl=en” target=”_blank”>Becuna Map

For my web mapping project, I used Google’s My Map project to map the journey of the USS Becuna from 1946 through 1953. The locations came from a timeline created by the Independence Seaport Museum and supplemented by primary sources from the archives at Naval History and Heritage Command. The locations were chosen to show the change in where the Becuna was used during its service, as it served in the Pacific during World War II but was moved to the Atlantic during the Cold War. The use of the map helps emphasis this shift and makes visual the primary sources that stressed the use of submarines in the Pacific against the Japanese and the shift to their use in the Atlantic against the Soviets after the war. Thus this map could be used to demonstrate how the change occurred rather than just listing the places the Becuna served. Furthermore, in a Public History setting, a map of where the Becuna went would be more engaging to the visitors and help them see the changes.

However, there were some challenges in making the map, mainly stemming from the lack of detail in the timeline and primary sources. For instance, the Becuna’s visit to Scotland in 1953 does not have an exact location in the reports nor does it have a more specific time then the month. This made it difficult to place marker, since it would place the marker in the middle of country. However, one benefit of using Google’s My Maps was that it made it easy to move the markers from the middle of a country to the coast. Still a concern in using the map is that any place used on the coast would be arbitrary and could misled users into thinking that was the official place it went. Thus while the map is quite useful in visualizing the travels of the Becuna, it is difficult to use in a formal capacity due to the lack of detail into its actual movements.